'Smart Home: Green + Wired' to Re-Open

January 12, 2010
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Chicago -- The Museum of Science and Industry will unveil Chicago’s Greenest Home with a dramatic new look and story on March 4, 2010.  The Smart Home: Green + Wired exhibit, a fully-functioning, eco-friendly home on the museum’s grounds, will be transformed courtesy of Midwest Living. The home will be redesigned to reflect the lifestyle of an empty-nester couple and will feature soft, organic textures and colors fused with a contemporary style. Tours of the home will run through Jan. 2, 2011.    

With 2,500-square-feet; an open, light-filled design; and multi-purpose spaces, the Smart Home is a perfect fit for a tech-savvy couple whose children are grown. The home, built to fit a standard Chicago city lot, allows empty nesters plenty of room and flexibility while offering them a unique, elegant, urban environment. And as housing trends indicate, this segment of the population is looking to minimize home maintenance, maximize efficiency and settle in to a space that not only is beautiful, but functional. The 2010 exhibit will emphasize great spaces for entertaining, a master bedroom that serves as a retreat, a whimsical nursery/ playroom for a visiting grandchild and a functional home office—all of which keep in mind natural elements and harmony with the earth.   

"Our objective was to enhance the already strong green message of the Smart Home with an interior design that highlights the natural environmental beauty of earth and visually demonstrates the importance of preserving its many natural resources,” said Carol Schalla, senior home and projects editor at Midwest Living.  

The modular Smart Home—conceived by the Museum of Science and Industry, designed by architect Michelle Kaufmann Designs and built by All American Homes of Decatur, Ind.—was opened to the public in May 2008 and then was redesigned for 2009. It was given the designation “Chicago’s Greenest Home” after a comprehensive review of the home’s plans, materials and design by the City of Chicago’s Chicago Green Homes Program. Since its opening, the Museum has welcomed more than 200,000 guests on 20-minute guided tours that showcase the ways, big and small, that people can make eco-friendly living a part of their lives.  

“We are thrilled to partner with Midwest Living on the Smart Home 2010,” said Anne Rashford, director of temporary exhibits at the Museum of Science and Industry. “The home has received such a great response from the public thus far, and we know this new look and inspired design from Midwest Living will continue to delight our guests in 2010.”  

For the upcoming exhibit run, the Museum will also continue to partner with WIREDmagazine to incorporate “smart” technologies into the home, with a continued focus on energy efficiency and allowing homeowners to make greener choices. The landscape surrounding the home, created and maintained with the help of the University of Illinois Extension, will feature native plantings and a sustainable vegetable garden, among other eco-friendly gardening ideas.  

Smart Home: Green + Wired exhibit is not included in general admission and requires an additional timed-entry ticket. Tour times vary and are subject to change. The tickets, which include general Museum admission, are $25 for adults, $24 for seniors and $15 for children 3-11. City of Chicago residents receive a discount. Visit for more information on schedules and to purchase tickets in advance.

About Midwest Living
Midwest Living magazine (, published by Meredith Corporation (NYSE: MDP), is a regional publication that celebrates the richness of life in the Midwest. Founded in 1987, the magazine is dedicated to providing its readers with a wealth of region-specific information and inspiration, focusing on travel and events, food and dining, and home and garden, as well as other editorial content categories. Midwest Living magazine, which reaches nearly 4 million readers, is published bi-monthly and has a rate base of 950,000.  

About the Museum of Science and Industry
The Museum of Science and Industry’s mission is to inspire the inventive genius in everyone by presenting captivating and compelling experiences that are real and educational. Located at 57th Street and Lake Shore Drive, the Museum is open every day of the year except December 25. Regular Museum hours are 9:30 a.m. until 4 p.m., Monday through Saturday, and 11 a.m. until 4 p.m. on Sunday. Extended spring break hours, until 5:30 p.m. each day, will be offered from March 18-April 1, 2010. The Museum offers indoor parking and is accessible by CTA and Metra.  The Museum is supported in part through the generosity of the people of Chicago through the Chicago Park District. For more information, visit the Museum’s Web site at or call (773) 684-1414 or (800) GO-TO-MSI outside of the Chicago area.

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